Tag: sleep

Mum Shares Simple Hack To Help Babies Sleep – All You Need Is One Household Item

If you curse spring and the clocks going forward for the knock-on effects it has on your child’s sleep, you’re not alone. 

I actively look forward to winter, with its dark, early skies and bleak mornings, and that’s because young children – my young children – are like birds. 

They’re up every morning at 6am with the dawn chorus, and when it starts getting light earlier on, so do they. I’ve tried everything, from a portable black-out blind to curtains lined with black-out material, to sticking pieces of black card over the window panes – but light always seems to find a way in. 

Thankfully, a mum in Northern Ireland thinks she has discovered how to end early wake-ups, with a simple – yet achingly effective – solution. And you don’t need to spend a ton of money, or shop somewhere obscure, to get one. 

All that you need…. is a bin bag. 

[Read more: ‘He Uses My Face As A Footrest’: How Long Should We Let Our Kids Sleep In Our Beds?]

Yes. You heard that right. The 31-year-old mum was so tired of her 10-month-old daughter waking up at 4.30 or 5am each day, that she came up with a cunning plan. 

She told Belfast Live: “I was losing my mind trying to figure out what was waking her up every morning. I thought it was hunger but she wasn’t overly fussed on her bottle when she did wake up.

“I tried everything but nothing seemed to work and I had resigned myself to the fact she would forever wake before 5am.”

The unnamed mum said she was inspired by a friend who asked if her daughter’s room was dark enough – because babies sleep better in those conditions due to the ‘sleep hormone’, melatonin.

[Read more: Pokémon Sleep: Is This Every Parent’s Dream Invention?]

“We had blackout curtains in her nursery but I did notice there was still light getting in through the top above the curtain,” the mum explained. 

“I didn’t really want to spend a fortune on new blinds and curtains in case they made absolutely no difference to her sleep so I decided to think outside the box and look for an alternative, and there it was right in my cupboard.”

And in the end, it was simple: she put bin liners up over the edges of the nursery room window where the light was getting in. She said she “didn’t even care what the neighbours must have thought”, as she was so desperate to get more sleep.

“I couldn’t believe it, the first night she slept until 8am, she had never done that before,” she revealed. “I thought it might have been a fluke but she’s sleeping to at least 7.30am every morning now, it’s amazing.”

I think we all know what’s at the top of my shopping list…

Pokémon Sleep: Is This Every Parent’s Dream Invention?

There are some things in life children are just better at than grown-ups – and one of those things is getting up early. They go from horizontal to full of beans in a heartbeat, suddenly requiring you – their hard-working, exhausted parent – to provide them with things like breakfast

It’s particularly galling when they later get grumpy, having sprung up before they’d had enough sleep (particularly as this tends to lead to Tantrum City).

Salvation may be on its way, though, in the unlikely but charming form of Pokémon. The gaming company has promised it will soon do for sleeping what they did for walking with Pokémon Go – gamifying it and making it newly exciting for children who would rather do almost anything else.

Introducing: Pokémon Sleep. 

Announcement 3⃣

What if you could continue training your Pokémon…even in your sleep? 💤

In 2016, Pokémon GO turned the simple act of walking into entertainment, making the entire world into a game. We’re about to do it again, Trainers—this time, for sleeping.

— Pokémon (@Pokemon) May 29, 2019

We’re pleased to announce the development of Pokémon Sleep, a new app from @Pokemon_cojp that tracks a user’s time sleeping and brings a gameplay experience unlike any other!

Several Snorlax were consulted on this, in case you were wondering. #PokemonSleep is coming in 2020. pic.twitter.com/nJ7mJY09Dl

— Pokémon (@Pokemon) May 29, 2019

When Pokémon Go came out in 2016, it was a phenomenon. Screen-obsessed kids who would previously have balked at the idea of going for a walk were all over it. The walks were inevitably spent staring into a screen, sure, but it was a step forward at least.

From the sounds of it, Pokémon Sleep seems set to work a lot like sleep tracker apps, but instead of using sleep stats to reach conclusions like “Guess that’s why I’m so tired!”, players will use them to train and upgrade their Pokémon. If kids won’t stay in bed past six in the morning for Mummy and Daddy, maybe they’ll do it for Snorlax.

Children in the UK don’t get as much sleep as they should. Last year, it was described as “a hidden health crisis”, as statistics showed sharp rises in children and teenagers being hospitalised for sleep disorders.

While full details on how Pokémon Sleep will work haven’t been released yet – and it seems unlikely to be as simple as “more sleep equals more points” – Pokémon has said its aim is for players to “look forward to waking up every day”, and it will be as much about forming good habits to promote healthy sleep as just running the hours up.

It’s not all good news – while Pokémon Go was a free app, Pokémon Sleep will require a special piece of equipment, Nintendo’s Pokémon Go Plus Plus (yes, two pluses), a Bluetooth-enabled sleep tracker that will transmit the child’s sleep data to a smartphone. The device won’t be released until 2020, and so details are pretty thin on the ground at the moment about things such as price, availability and what will happen to data uploaded about your child.

But who knows? If it takes a bit of competitiveness and encouragement from a weird-ass blob thing to persuade a child to get a healthy night’s sleep – and let their parents get a few more minutes in bed – that’s probably not entirely a bad thing.

What Wedding Night Sex Is Really Like: ‘I Had To Get My Mum To Unhook My Dress’

It was 3am in a seedy hotel in Camberwell, south London. With their drunk wedding guests still happily dancing the night away, Olivia, 40, and her new husband Laurie, 39, returned to their room and jumped into bed together. “It would definitely have been weird for us not to have had sex on our wedding day,” Olivia tells me nine years after the big day. “It’s our favourite thing.” 

In fact, she’d so loved her first day being called ‘Mrs’ that she spent all day looking forward to getting between the sheets. So she chucked her red wine-spattered wedding dress into the sink – and had sex. “Weddings are weird because you don’t get to spend much time together,” she says. “You both look amazing and yet you’re often just appreciating each other from across the room. So we couldn’t wait for the our chance just to be together.”

Historically the wedding night was often the first time a couple shared a bed – so you can understand a willingness to power through the exhaustion, drunkeness and awkward-to-remove wedding attire. It’s the reason wedding night sex attained its near-mythical connotations. 

But now the landscape is very different, with the number of couples who co-habit before marrying far outnumbering those who don’t – and many newlyweds admit that for them, wedding night sex didn’t happen at all. 

Natalie*, 27, was expecting her wedding night to be super romantic, intimate and beautiful “just like in the movies”. In fact, when she got married two years ago, she and her husband were so knackered they were asleep the moment their heads hit the pillows. “When we got in bed we just knew sex was off the cards. We were unbelievably tired,” she says.

Our close friends even asked jokingly how we consummated our marriage…”

But while the reality was giving in to exhaustion, there was still an expectation – not just from each other, but also from friends – that their wedding night would be steamy. “Everyone at our wedding kept joking about how wild our wedding night was going to be and they were definitely expecting sex,” she says.  

“Our close friends even asked the next day jokingly about how we consummated our marriage. They all laughed when we told them we were snoring within one minute.”

Natalie and her partner are not alone in swapping sex for sleep. Faustina, 41, who was married 13 years ago, also found her wedding night expectations were put on ice when she and her husband dozed off in the bath before they got a chance to have sex.

“[Wedding sex] dominated all talks amongst my friends and classmates way before I got married. So I thought it was something that was bound to happen. However, on the night we both were too tired and fell asleep in the bathtub.”

Both women say their husbands felt more disheartened that sex hadn’t happened. Natalie says: “My husband was excited about our first night as a married couple and had been imagining all the things we would be doing that night – bless him!”

Karolina, 29, married her partner in Poland five years ago. Neither she nor her husband were bothered that they slept instead of having sex. “We went to bed at 6am – Polish weddings are really long,” she explains. “After 18 hours of stress, party, all we wanted was to get some sleep. It was just another night we spent together.”

Not everyone succumbs to the lure of sleep over sex. Other couples simply prioritise their stomachs. Cara*, 28, who got married in May 2016, said: “By the time we’d got back to our room, all there was left to do was order a burger and chips on room service, take off the dress that had left me with bruises, and rest my throbbing feet.”

For Charlotte and her new husband, there was dinner then admin: “We went to McDonald’s on the way back home, had a feast, made note of gifts and then packed ready for our honeymoon the next morning,” she recalls. “I think we fell asleep to Family Guy. It didn’t bother us.”

For others, just getting undressed for bed proved the impossible obstacle to christening the marriage in the way they’d imagined. Nigel, 62, and his bride got to the honeymoon suite to find a bottle of champagne and a full decanter of brandy. “We shared both but my biggest challenge was yet to come,” he says. “First to get her to the toilet (as the bridesmaids were nowhere to be seen) and then get the dress off her so she could get to bed. Who knew that would be so tough…”

Zoë, 33, who married her husband Ben in September 2017, also struggled. “He got in the shower and I couldn’t get out of my dress. I had to go and find my mum’s room to get her to unhook me as there were lots of tiny buttons, too small for his hands.” Freed of her frock she returned to her new husband. “When I got back to our room, he was asleep in his wedding trousers face down on the bed.”

Tearing themselves away from guests proved tricky for other couples. When Sam and her husband Paul got married, they stayed up all night drinking with old friends they hadn’t seen in a long time. “We had hired the whole hotel and were all staying there, it was such a great day to catch up. I don’t think it is the big deal it used to be. People have sex before marriage and often live together. Many just want to enjoy their wedding day and party with friends and family.”

When the pair finally climbed the stairs to bed they exchanged a kiss and went to bed – Sam left the bridal nightwear she had bought specifically for another night. “I think many couples enjoy great sex on their honeymoon, as we did,” she says.

That certainly seems the case. But props to the newly-weds who do prioritise sex on their wedding day. (Or at least manage to stay awake long enough to have any). Martin, 41, and his wife Lucy had the “best sex” they’d had in ages on their wedding night in 2007, he says – they’d had a brilliant day, were drunk, really in the mood and keen to get down to it.

For Sarah*, 29, and her partner, who got married in 2012 after two and a half years together, they felt the need to consummate their big day – even though they both felt like going to sleep. “Wedding night? You’ve got to seal the deal, right? We had sex because we thought we had to seal the deal even though we were super tired,” she says.

Which is some commitment to marking a sexual milestone – and more than most people manage. While it was definitely a consideration for many of the people we spoke to, many just couldn’t stay awake long enough to see it through. 

Some names have been changed.

Mo Salah Sleeping On The Plane Floor Is Holiday Goals

We all know the misery of trying to sleep on a plane: the eye mask that lets the light in; the serial seat-recliner in the row in front of you; the near-on impossibility of finding a travel pillow that doesn’t crick your neck; and finally dropping off – only to find your neighbour needs the loo.

Or you could just find a spare bit of floor and lie down there. Well, if it’s good enough for Liverpool FC and Egypt football star, Mohamed Salah…

This year’s Golden Boot winner was on a flight out to the team’s hot weather training camp in Marbella, Spain, ahead of Liverpool’s Champions League final against Tottenham, when he was caught in the act… of napping.

[Read More: How to get your trip off the ground if you’re scared of flying]

Salah was captured on Instagram by his teammate Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who panned over the top of his own seat to show the Egyptian midfielder wrapped up in a blanket on the floor – with an airline pillow folded in half (we’ve all been there) – trying to catch some kip on the flight. 

Some of the other Liverpool players, including Virgil Van Dijk and Dejan Lovren, soon gathered around row 20 to witness the sight. As Oxlade-Chamberlain put it: “Egyptian kings need sleep too”.

If only Salah had discovered HuffPost Finds, where we’ve tested a range of sleep aids – from eye masks to sleep sprays and anti-snore pillows. Or when all else fails, our 10 top tips for falling, and staying, asleep on a plane. 

These include staying away from the light (that means your phone and TV screen), listening to white noise, and avoiding sugary snacks. Or, as the cast of TOWIE taught us: no carbs before Marbs, Mo. 

When To Exercise (And How) For A Better Night’s Sleep

Physically tiring yourself out may seem like a logical way to get a good night’s sleep, but exercising too close to bedtime could have the opposite effect.

“Strenuous workouts can stimulate the body and increase our temperature, which can make it difficult to nod off,” explains Alasdair Henry PhD, research manager at Sleepio, an NHS-approved digital sleep-improvement programme. 

We should avoid intense exercise two hours before bedtime to get the best night’s rest, he says. “A drop in body temperature is an important cue for sleep, so counteracting this process with exercise may keep you awake,” he tells HuffPost UK. 

[Read More: What food to eat (and when) for a better night’s sleep]

While there is limited research into how exercise affects sleep the few studies in this area do show working out can help improve sleep, says Henry – providing you do it at the right time of day. “Moderate aerobic exercise can help you fall asleep faster, improve sleep efficiency and sleep quality, and also make you feel more rested in the morning,” he says. 

Although the reasons for these effects are unclear, the benefits are thought to be due to a drop in the body’s temperature in the hours after exercise – which may make it easier to sleep. Exercise can also help improve our mood and reduce feelings of anxiety, Henry adds. 

It makes no difference whether we workout in the early morning or afternoon, the research shows – it’s only working out immediately before bed that can be troublesome. If you already work out later in the evening, however, and haven’t found that it affects your sleep, then there’s no need to change your routine. 

But it’s not just a one-way relationship between sleep and exercise. Personal trainer Dom Thorpe argues that just as exercise can potentially improve sleep, so sleep can also improve how we experience exercise. “Exercising requires recovery time, which is best done when asleep,” he tells HuffPost UK. 

In order to reap the biggest benefit from sleep, Thorpe says you should keep your workouts varied. It’s important to cover the three main types of exercise –cardiovascular, resistance (strength) and flexibility (yoga or similar) – he advises. 

Thorpe agrees with Henry that in an ideal world, we would “train, eat and sleep in that order”, but points out modern life doesn’t always allow us to stick to this routine. “As an alternative, a great way to lead you into a deep sleep would be to do a relaxing form of yoga such as Yin shortly before bed,” he says.   

Does Lush’s £9 ‘Miracle’ Sleepy Lotion Really Give You A Good Night’s Rest? I Put It To The Test

I’ve struggled to fall asleep for as long as I can remember. As a kid I would wake my parents up constantly to tell them so, in my teens I was restless, and now, as a 28-year-old, I’ve still not mastered the art of catching zzzs. For at least an hour each night, I lie in bed with my eyes squeezed shut willing myself to nod off. I mull over things that happened in the day and fret about the future. Once I’m asleep I’m fine, it’s just actually nodding off that I struggle with.

I’ve tried to reduce my bedtime anxiety in many ways: sometimes I take herbal sleeping tablets or listen to the sound of rain on YouTube; sometimes I have a “wind down” hour like I’m a toddler where I avoid watching TV or using my phone; and ultimately I try to tell myself that if I stop stressing about falling asleep then maybe I actually will.

TL,DR: I’m desperate. So when I hear about Lush’s ‘Sleepy’ body lotion, touted as a “miracle cream” that has supposedly helped hoards of insomniacs fall asleep, I decide (somewhat dubiously/doubtfully) to give it a go.

[Read More: I tried Silent Night’s £15 anti-snoring pillow so my partner could finally get some sleep – here’s what happened]

The moisturiser is a mix of “gentle oatmeal infusion, calming lavender flower and comfortingly sweet tonka”, but smells sweet and a bit like cinnamon. Sleep expert Richard Jolie says on Lush’s website that the mix of these ingredients work well to soothe the mind and help people doze off. Lavender is the key here – studies have shown it can induce relaxation by decreasing our heart rate and blood pressure.

I’m going to testthe lotion for a week to get reliable results – and try and keep an open mind. “What, so you’re going to fall asleep just by putting on moisturiser?” my flatmate jokes, but, after reading the ingredients, she concedes: “Oh, lavender? Mate, you’re going to be out for the count tonight.”

In winter, all you want to do is be wrapped up under a duvet, so spending 15 minutes before bed standing in the cold rubbing lotion all over my body is a challenge in itself. I wonder how much of a difference moisturising my legs will have on my sleep pattern, but hey. As I crawl under the duvet moments afterwards, I can already feel my eyes drooping. I debate whether it’s because I had a busy day at work or a hard gym session, but before I come to a conclusion I’m asleep.

This continues for the next few nights. I apply the lotion along my chest, arms, neck and face rather than my whole body (which doesn’t feel necessary), and the impact is the same as night one. My mind isn’t tired when I get into bed, but for my body it’s a different story. It’s like inhaling the lavender with each breath helps me to wind down into that perfect, drowsy, pre-sleep stage. Instead of my usual hour of tossing and turning, I’m out like a light within about 25 minutes.

But it’s not all plain sailing till morning. Now, I’ve got a new obstacle: waking up several times in the early hours and being unable to fall back to sleep immediately, which is something I’ve never experienced before.

On the fifth night of my trial, I decide not to use the lotion to compare how my sleep differs. I haven’t had a particularly busy day but feel unusually tired as I get ready for bed. To my surprise, I fall asleep within 20 minutes without using the lotion – super speedy for me.

I return to using the lotion for the remainder of the week: on night six, I go out like a light, while on the seventh, after a particularly stressful day, I struggle to fall asleep – maybe this would’ve been longer if I hadn’t used the lotion, who knows?

Having a good or bad night’s sleep is down to so many factors: your state of mind, what you did that day, what you ate, what you did before bed, what you’re doing the next day (and how you’re feeling about it) – so despite having an unusually good week of sleeping, I can’t put this success solely down to a lotion.

That said, Lush does what it says on the tin. The brand doesn’t claim to “cure” insomnia. It doesn’t promise to get you to sleep within minutes and it definitely doesn’t promise you eight hours in the land of nod. “Slather on this gorgeous pale purple lotion, breathe in its sweet, comforting lavender and tonka perfume, and you’ll instantly feel at ease,” Lush says about the product, adding: “It’ll hush your thoughts ready for a peaceful night’s sleep.”

Slathering on a pleasing, soft scent onto my body before bed is an evening ritual I begin to enjoy. The smell instantly relaxes me and the feeling of my soft skin against my dressing gown makes me feel cosy and warm. The simple act of doing something to aid my sleep – taking those few minutesfor myself – probably has a lot to do with it. The lotion gives me a sense of control over my bedtime habits and puts me in a positive state of mind as I snuggle down. So it’s a ritual I’ll carry on, but mostly on those days that I really need to focus on self-care.

CBeebies Is Starting ‘Bedtime Hour’ 15 Minutes Earlier – And Parents Are Livid

CBeebies has extended its popular bedtime hour – rebranding it as ‘CBeebies Bedtime’ – to run from 5.45pm until 7pm, rather than its former 6pm start. But parents aren’t happy about it. 

The BBC kids’ programme has added a new show to the slot ‘Moon & Me’ – a charmingly sleepy programme from the creators of ‘In The Night Garden’, which will kick off at the earlier time of 5.45pm.

[Read More: CBeebies refers to snowmen as ‘snowpeople’ and people think it’s one step too far]

“My children are OBSESSED with your new show Moon and Me… It’s brilliant btw, we all love it!” 😍

NEW episodes now in orbit on @BBCiPlayer and joining #CBeebiesBedtime schedule every weekday! 🙌@MoonandMeHQpic.twitter.com/yoskqn3Xqz

— CBeebies Grown-Ups 🎉 (@CBeebiesHQ) February 4, 2019

The Bedtime slot involves gentle, slow-paced shows – the idea being that it winds kids down. There’s no action-packed ‘Go Jetters’-style explosions and high-octane adventures, just ever such a lot of pleasantness. 

Routine is important and a lot of households integrate ‘Bedtime Hour’ into their children’s nighttime routine (the clue is in the name really) – so the change has caused some parents to be pretty upset. Livid, in fact. 

can’t believe cbeebies changed the bedtime hour to 5:45 instead of 6, absolutely livid x

— charlie knows nought (@willnpegme) January 15, 2019

CBeebies are changing their bedtime to 5.45 what kid goes to bed that early I want one😐😐😐😐

— toni (@toniizatt) February 3, 2019

Woah bedtime starts at 5.45 on cbeebies now?! We’ll all still be in rush hour traffic!

— Felicity Bub Mumma (@FelicityBub) February 5, 2019

This is going to be the most “mum” thing I ever tweet, but bedtime hour starts at 5.45 now on CBeebies?!?!? I’m lucky if ava has her dinner before 6! What sort of angel child is getting ready for bed at 5.45 and where can I get one???????

— Ellice Manning (@elllice) February 4, 2019

Right. 

Parenting is tough, and changes can sometimes feel like challenges, but part of me can’t help but think this is the biggest non-problem ever. It still goes until 7pm. The end of it – the bit where your child goes to sleep – is at the same time as ever it was. The only difference is that ‘Bedtime Hour’– this free thing given to you and your child every day – is 15 minutes longer. That’s all that has changed.

They’re not saying children should be going to bed at 5.45pm – just as when it started at 6pm, they weren’t expecting children to be going to bed at the beginning of the programme.

The most straightforward solution is turning the TV on at 6pm like parents did before and having a completely unchanged experience. Problem solved. You can do the same thing as you did before. 

If CBeebies had reduced it to ‘Bedtime Half-Hour’, I’d understand why parents would get angry. If they cancelled it entirely and ran an ‘Embarrassing Bodies’ compilation then yeah, that would be a case for a strongly-worded letter and a rethink. 

But this, this is nothing, nothing at all.  

CBeebies Bedtime now starts at 5:45pm. That’s the hammer! Get them little bastards in bed ASAP.

— Ginge Knievil (@GingeKnievil) February 5, 2019

The Best Women’s Pyjamas To Keep You Warm This Winter

When the weather is this cold there’s just one thing we want to do: hibernate. And no early night (or lazy day) is complete without super soft, long-sleeved, cosy pyjamas.

Here’s our pick of some of the snuggliest on the high street at the moment. Pair with a water bottle and show that snow who’s boss. 

Just Keep Lounging 

Sleep Slogan Lounge Set, M&S, Top, £20, Bottoms, £20

This sweatshirt with jogging bottom-style trousers is the perfect set to take you from sofa to bed. Ideal for a cosy night in front of the telly. Popcorn optional. 

Buy them here.

Check It Out 

ASOS DESIGN Curve Mix & Match Check, ASOS, Shirt, £16, Trousers, £14

Checked pyjamas are practically a wardrobe staple. This pair looks so comfy, we’re not sure we’ll ever want to get dressed again. 

Buy the set here.   

Pyjama Llama Party

Grey Llama Knit-Look Pyjama Set, Debenhams, £24 (was £30)

We’re not entirely sure why llama prints are taking over homeware and now loungewear, but we’re into it. This set is in the sale, so don’t hang about. 

Buy it here.

‘Sea’ You Tomorrow 

Seahorse Long PJ Set, Chelsea Peers NYC, £35

If you love a splash of colour, this pink and turquoise set is for you. We’re loving the quirky seahorse print. 

Buy the set here.

Ahoy there! 

Navy Stripe Women’s Tie Waist Pyjamas, Next, £25

These PJs are slightly lighter weight than some in our roundup, meaning you can wear them into spring. The long sleeves should keep you toasty for now though. 

Buy them here

Flower Power

ASOS DESIGN Abstract Navy Floral Trouser Set, ASOS, £22 (was £28)

Pyjamas don’t just have to be functional: this set is also super stylish. Better yet, the set is made from sustainable beech-tree pulp, which uses less water and less waste than other traditional PJ materials. 

Buy the set here

I Tried Silent Night’s £15 Anti-Snoring Pillow So My Partner Could Finally Get Some Sleep – Here’s What Happened

I always knew I was a snorer. It’d been mentioned on long car trips by family growing up, and I assumed it got somewhat worse in my late teens after my step-sister inadvertently broke my nose in a back garden game of catch gone wrong (who’s to blame, we’ve never decided).

Thanks to my wife, however, it’s been made very clear that my snoring is lethal. As a stretched and exhausted primary school teacher, her sleep is vital not just for her but indeed for the future of our nation, and so we’re always scouting for ways to reduce my snoring (and guilt), and reduce her stress. I’ve tried nose strips, sleeping different ways, even in different rooms.

“Annoying, constant and a little bit like a plane taking off” is how my wife chose to describe my vice for this piece. “It’s very loud and doesn’t have a consistent pattern, which actually makes it even more annoying.”

How does it disrupt her sleep? We’re at the point where we regularly go to bed at different times so she can settle in before I ruin everything. I’m told when the snores get bad, she can’t block them out.

So could Silentnight’s anti-snoring pillow save our sleep?

The pillow is ergonomically designed with an s-shaped foam core to align your spine, neck and head to reduce snoring. As a side-sleeper, the frankly intimidatingly comfortable-looking hippo sleeping on the packaging had me worried this wouldn’t do the job, but Silentnight claims this suits both back sleepers and those of us who prefer a single side.

The pillow is also said to have been found to cut down on snoring by half, according to the British Snoring & Sleep Apnoea Association. So we were looking at coin flip odds that this pillow would finally allow my wife some proper sleep.

The first night of testing, I have to admit it took some getting used to. I found it discomforting at first to rest my head on this new, spongy pillow and it took half an hour or so of fidgeting to feel fully comfortable.

After that, we were flying. I woke the next morning fully rested with no fuzzy memories of being rolled around or grunted at. Same again the next night, as we adjusted to this new paradise. My wife’s review? “Definitely not snoring in the way you usually would, and you weren’t waking me up.” 

Sweet dreams then? Not so fast.

To add an extra layer of intrigue, I’m training for the London Marathon in April. This, obviously, involves a lot of running – up to five times a week, in fact, with increasingly long distances on the weekends. As a result, getting enough sleep to help recovery is an important part of the process, and I was keen to see how this pillow would help me out. After an exhaustingly long Sunday run, I found I couldn’t sleep through the night on my new pillow, after which I began to develop an anxiety around setting myself and the pillow just right.

To both me and my wife’s our dismay, this persisted. The following few nights, particularly after running when I needed a good night’s sleep the most, I can remember waking up multiple times a night to rejig my pillow, flip it around and turn it every which way to get myself aligned correctly with the foam. Meanwhile, I’m told my snoring returned – not to a jet engine degree, but “noticeable”.

Through a week’s trial, I was left unconvinced that this pillow was a cure to our problems. It was worsening my sleep most nights as I struggled to adapt, and the faff of ‘using’ the pillow correctly didn’t feel worth the effort. Maybe I am just one of the 50% for whom the pillow wouldn’t do the trick.

I did wonder, though, why my snoring had still been less loud over the week. To get to the bottom of things, it was back to my wife for her diagnosis.

She’d been wearing ear plugs.

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